The Los Angeles Dodgers officially announced the signing of reliever Joe Kelly on Friday. Moreover, some interesting details about Kelly’s contract incentives with the Dodgers were released.
Bob Nightengale and Jorge Castillo released some interesting on details of the contract on twitter:
Joey Kelly Contract Incentives
Interestingly, the Dodgers are awarding Kelly for games finished. Equally important, this can come in a save or non-save situation. This is very key – perhaps the two sides see Kelly as a necessary sidekick for Kenley Jansen moving into the future.
Kelly has shown the propensity and stuff to be a late-inning reliever. As evidenced in the 2018 World Series, when he had 10 strikeouts in six innings against the Dodgers.
Joe Kelly will earn $3 million in 2019 with a $3 million signing bonus in #Dodgers deal; $8.5 million in 2020-2021. He also has $12 million option or $4 million buyout in 2022. Also can earn as much as $2 million per year in incentives for games finished.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) December 21, 2018
Joe Kelly's contract, as others have reported, is for at least 3 years, $25 million guaranteed with a $12 million team option for 2022. If Dodgers pick it up then it's $33 million. And that doesn't include a bunch of incentives for games finished, which is an interesting wrinkle.
— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) December 21, 2018
Joe Kelly Officially Announced As Los Angeles Dodger
The Los Angeles Dodgers made the local boy come home, and ink officially met paper on Friday. From the official press release:
LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Dodgers today announced the signing of right-handed pitcher Joe Kelly to a three-year contract.
Kelly, 30, is 43-25 with a 3.87 ERA in 250 career Major League games (79 starts) over seven seasons with St. Louis (2012-14) and Boston (2014-18). As a reliever, Kelly has posted a 3.29 ERA with a 1.27 WHIP, a .234 opponents’ batting average and 190 strikeouts in 194.0 innings in 171 games. In 21 career postseason relief appearances, Kelly has posted a 1.07 ERA and a 0.87 WHIP, while limiting opposing hitters to a .189 batting average.
Kelly was originally selected by St. Louis in the 3rd round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of California, Riverside, where he set the team’s career saves record (24). He attended Corona High School in Corona, California.
Welcome home, Joe Kelly! pic.twitter.com/P3k2rs47lJ
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) December 21, 2018
New Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly said he doesn't care what inning he pitches, but wants to pitch "whenever the big outs are."
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) December 21, 2018
Furthermore, Kelly sounds like he is interested in being a ‘team’ guy. It’s nice to hear that he doesn’t have the expectation of a specific role. Los Angeles can use this flexibility to get the most out of Kelly and get the big outs late.
The most interesting part of all this news is of course, the incentives piece. I wanted a relief-ace all offseason, and while I had delusions of others who have recently signed; Kelly really does fit the mold. He will be a great fit in Dodger Blue, and I am excited to see the California boy flourish and bring a title to Los Angeles.
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